In farming, especially for business purposes, growing and maintaining crops is not the only thing that is crucial for your farm to be successful. The business and marketing side also plays an important role for the farm to continue. A step that many long-time farmers highly suggest is to know if there’s an available market for the crops you’ll grow to ensure that you are not wasting your resources.
Erin Eno is a young farmer who left her desk job to be full-time in farming. Reading a book by Kurt Timmermeister called ‘Growing a Farmer’ was her inspiration that led her to where she is now.
A start-up strategy
At first, she had fewer customers than what is expected; sticking to the initial plan would limit her to get sufficient revenue. So she tried to look for ways to increase awareness to potential customers through reaching out to local businesses, using online advertising, and by giving away flyers in public transport. This made her realize the difficulty of building an image of an unknown brand and introducing it to the public. She came up with an idea to sell her produce in a small farmers’ market. The farmers’ market opened more opportunities for her to connect with more potential clients as people regularly come.
Luckily, on her first day at the market, the farmer immediately gained an important network that soon recognized her business. She met a high quality Vietnamese restaurant chef who values the use of locally grown ingredients. Soon enough, she supplied vegetables in the same restaurant and featured her produce on the menu.
Her farming journey wasn’t smooth and easy. She took an intensive program through an organization to evaluate if her farming dreams suit her. Through the program, which gave considerable focus on the importance of business and marketing aspects of farming, she met partners who now work with her in farm operations. She uses the clients’ feedback to learn and continually enhance her farming methods and strategies.
It was an unimaginable dream for this former corporate worker to become a farmer one day, but now, farming is where she sees herself in the long run.